Tube or not tube? That is the question.
The question is easy, but the answer… not so much. Do they sound better than their solid-state counterparts? Every time there is a difference some will perceive it as an improvement and some as a deterioration. Is lemon better than lime?
Vacuum tubes are widely available and well priced, they last for years and when it comes time to replace them, the job is fast and easy, a plug-n-play. The tubes used in the preamp section will last much longer than the power amp’s tubes and are far less expensive.
I, for one, think that using a combination of tubes and solid-state is the best answer. This can be accomplished by using a tubed pre-amp together with a solid-state power amp, or a Hybrid integrated amp. This has been a long-standing argument within the audiophile community, and the answer my friend, is blowing in the wind, the answer is blowing in the wind.